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trouble integrating new hen

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
hi! i was hoping for some advice about integrating a new hen. we have a small flock of 3 hens that we raised up together from the day they were born. we adopted a new hen 3.5 weeks ago. normally we wouldn't have tried to introduce a singleton, but her situation before coming to us was one of neglect. they were quarantined & we introduced the newby (fred is her name) 1st opposite a fence. we've been monitoring them & only intervening if the others corner her or it otherwise appears they are physically harming her. i'm disheartened because it's been over 3 weeks & they still attack her at night if she tries to come inside the coop to roost. she submits appropriately, but the "charlies angels" don't let up. we have a set up for her in the run so she can escape so she's safe from predators & them, & i'm not so much worried about her being injured, but we can see her trying to integrate & the other girls won't accept her. tonite we stumbled on a potential solution, they immediately stop if the in-coop light is turned off, but i imagine they'll continue chasing her around the yard tomorrow. any advice?
post #2 of 4

You may wish to consider having multiple feeding stations to reduce the likelihood of fighting over food / water. And yes, the hens will calm down once the light is switched off - not sure why the light is on as once they are roosting they are no longer feeding. 

I also put a make-shift barrier on my roost so one area is separate from another - that way, subordinate hens can roost in peace. 


If there is no harm being done from squabbles, then i would not worry too much about it. I have read on other threads that one can keep the newbie in a sectioned off part of the run, and introduce just one of your flock for a few days, and see how they get on. There are lots of threads on this subject, so feel free to search for them.


Good luck


post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
we have multiple feeding & watering stations & they free range throughout the day. we just moved from wi to or & used the lamp habitually b/c it's so cold there in the winter. but now we're in or so we probably don't need it, duh. thx for the info!
post #4 of 4

It may take three more weeks but before you know it, it will calm down. I just went through it introducing three new hens to my existing three and a roo. They were pretty relentless, and my newbies were submissive. It took all I had not to interfere (well ok, I did once or twice - they were being soooo mean!!!) and the newbies don't fight back - what's up with that?? 


I agree with CTKen about separating part of the roost for her. We all know the plusses of a good night's sleep! Good luck!

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